Genealogy Resources Getting Started Research Tips

Tracing Your Family Origins

Tracing Your Family Origins

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If you’ve ever wondered about past relatives, you’re not alone. I’ve always been curious about my ancestors. Knowing where you come from is a wonderful feeling because it provides for you a sense of context, stability, and pride in your heritage… and it’s just plain old fun.

A Reason for Family Time

Once you begin finding out about your family’s history, you should dedicate yourself and put forth the effort to achieve this goal. At this stage, it really helps to get other members of your family involved. At family time, you can speak with your parents, grandparents, siblings, and other family members.  Ask them to share stories from the past about ancestors you’ve never met. You will be surprised how many helpful facts you can uncover. Write these facts down and keep a notebook of all your findings for future reference.

A Need for Free Genealogy Research

Next, review your family notes, tracing relevant patterns. For example, if your mother’s father, your grandfather, could only remember his grandfather’s name, then you would search for his grandmother’s name. By doing genealogy research, you can discover the missing name of your maternal great-grandparent.

Like a detective on a case, you will find that locating ancestors requires a lot of patience, time, and even money. To avoid the financial trap of spending all your money on tracing your family origin, it is wise to seek out and use free genealogy research websites. It is possible to access public documents, such as death, immigration, and marriage records, using these websites. With no cost to you, there is an abundance of useful facts and figures in online databases.

The Making of a Family Tree

Family Tree Memory Keeper: Your Workbook for Family History, Stories and Genealogy

Family Tree Memory Keeper: Your Workbook for Family History, Stories and Genealogy (Amazon)

Now, with all the information you find, the next step is to develop your family tree. A family tree is a drawing or graphic of a tree that has branches and a trunk. One side of the tree is for maternal relatives, and the other side is for paternal relatives.  On each branch, place the name of a relative according to their position in the family. For instance, your great-grandfather and great-grandmother’s names will be placed on two adjacent branches, with your grandfather and his siblings underneath. Spice up your family tree by adding color and highlighting branches that trace your family origin.

Discovery of heritage leads to deeper understanding of your family and cultural ties. It is also a great way to remember and respect your ancestors. Tracing family origin by doing free genealogical research motivates us to learn about history and share in life’s celebrations.


Will Moneymaker

Will established Ancestral Findings in 1995 and has helped genealogy researchers for over 25 years. He is also a freelance photographer, husband of twenty-eight years, father of four children, and has one grandchild.